Two Ethiopian nationals were assaulted on Friday when their shop was robbed of an undisclosed amount of money in Soshanguve.
The pair, Lemme Abute and Teketel Abe, said two armed men unhinged the shop’s burglar door and forcefully gained entry.
The robbers allegedly assaulted the pair with a hammer, breaking Abe’s arm in the process.
Abe said he did not believe the attacks were xenophobic but purely criminal.
This was the first time the shop had been attacked though there has been a spate of similar attacks on other foreign nationals trading in the area.
As was the case in previous attacks, the criminals threatened to shoot the owner of the house where the two men had set up shop.
Abute said the attack would not drive them out of the township. “We are not afraid. We are not going to leave,” said Abute.
Police spokeswoman, Captain Riana van Aarde said it appeared as though foreign nationals in Soshanguve had been targeted by robbers who perceived them as easy prey.
“They know that foreigners sleep in the spaza shops, so they are guaranteed to find valuables along with their stock,” she said.
Abute said he came to South Africa in 2010 seeking a better life.
He said the men assaulted them and demanded money.
“They took R2 500, airtime vouchers, cigarettes worth about R1 000,” he said.
“We went to the clinic for them to treat Tekel,” Abute said.
- Pretoria News Weekend